The real trial with a ‘robot lawyer will have to wait: the creator of the chatbot is threatened with jail if he does it
The company was supposedly committed to taking risks, but not related to prison sentences, so they have backtracked on their experiment.
An Artificial Intelligence created by the company DoNotPay was going to serve as legal counsel in two trials for traffic fines.
The CEO of the company, Joshua Browder, had talked about it and had even promised to pay the fines and financially compensate the defendants for being part of the tests.
The legal fight was due to take place in court next month, but State Bar prosecutors warned that the actual DoNotPlay experiment could land Browder in prison for six months.
Given this information, the executive director has announced that they have postponed the court case “adhering to consumer rights.”
Bowder and his team were supposedly willing to “take risks” because there seemed to be no clear legislation prohibiting AI legal assistance.
He intended to use AirPods and hearing accessibility in his project since in some courts, Internet-connected devices cannot be used.
The two lawsuits the AI was going to help defend were for highway speeding tickets. One of them was going to be held in person (the one with the AirPods) and another was going to be done via Zoom, so the idea of using a teleprompter instead of a synthetic voice was being considered.
However, after the threat from the State Bar Association, Browder decided that he is not worth spending six months in jail for being the first to bring a robot lawyer into the courtroom. Even if AI is not used in the trial. The DoNotPay chatbot can be used to resolve legislative questions.